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Helping those who need it most
The St. Albert Food Bank is collecting school supplies, backpacks, lunch bags, and other items. TIM GOUW/Unsplash

Back-to-school donations 

Inflation has been hitting parents where it hurts — in the pocketbook. The economic forecast for the next few months is negative and unpredictable. 

To offset issues for families having financial difficulties, the St. Albert Food Bank is collecting school supplies, backpacks, lunch bags, and reusable water bottles for school-age children and adolescents. 

In the younger grades, children need scissors, glue, art supplies, pens, pencils, markers, and a pencil case. They also require binders, paper sheets, notebooks, report covers, labels, calculators, and dictionaries. 

Older students need more advanced calculators, dictionaries, thesauruses, flash drives, a planner, premium binders, notebooks, and paper. Sturdy gym bags, gym locks, and backpacks are also helpful. 

Donations are welcome and can be dropped off at the food bank at 50 Bellerose Dr. anytime Monday to Friday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Parents are welcome to stop in during August to pick up supplies. For more information call 780-459-0599. 

SAIF social media series 

Friendships can be tricky. How do you start? How do you keep it alive? How do you break it off when it no longer works? 

SAIF (Stop Abuse in Families) is uploading a new social media series in August. The series, named Healthy Friendships, provides direction to young people in forming life-affirming connections. 

Week one relays tips on finding genuine friends, making great friends, and having the patience to meet someone new. The second week includes tips on being the type of friend you would like to have, communicating boundaries, playing fair, and respecting consent.

The third week discusses managing emotions, addressing conflicts in a safe friendship, and details how conflicts can be positive. The final week touches on how sometimes friendships break down, and teaches lessons on walking away or dealing when the other person chooses to do so. 

This entire series will be posted on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.  

Mental health speaks loudly 

Outloud St. Albert is kick-starting a new Mental Health First Aid program for Grades 10 and older. The two-day, in-person workshop takes place Aug. 23 and 24. 

“We’ve noticed in the group of kids we serve that mental health is a big topic of conversation ... often we give information, but we don’t equip them to use it. It’s not often we know how to give them the tools they need to support their friends,” said Kelsey Robbins, Outloud manager. 

Pam Collross, a community resource coordinator, will lead the workshop and provide mental health aid. She will discuss five main topics: mental health and stigma, substance related disorders, mood disorders, psychotic disorders, and anxiety and trauma. 

“Any young person is welcome to attend. We run it out of our space because it’s safer for kids in the queer community, and we focus on the queer community, but anyone who wants to come is welcome,” Robbins said. 

The workshop runs from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. both days at 10A-215 Carnegie Dr. There is a $35 charge for a manual. 

“If cost is a concern, we are happy to work with them. We want this to be as low-barrier as possible.” 

For more information call 587-936-9620 or visit

Anna Borowiecki

About the Author: Anna Borowiecki

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